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ADRIAN J . lORiP JJTl^^-' 

[he pictorial cx-Iibris, as a rule, reveals, 
or is intended to reveal, the beautiful 
in book-plates* How much nicer it 
is to affix a handsome label by some 
good artist to our books than to add 
a poor armorial or unsightly name la- 
bel. Every day, perhaps, if we all look at our 
treasures that often, one might open the leaves 
of some book, and meet this example of the ar- 
tist's best thoughts, a forerunner of the treats in 
store in the volume. 

Many people decry the pictorial plate and 
think a name label or some other monstrosity 
should be used as being more digniiicdf so they 
express it, but it is in the nature of most men 
to beautify all that comes within their reach, or 
at least attempt it, and what more fitting than 
a pretty plate setting forth the ownership of a 
volume in some beautiful manner ? 
A great many of the pictorial plates are alle- 

gorical, which is xstgcd against them, but they 
may be bookish too; there is no end to the pos- 
sibilities of this style, but there is a limit to the 
label or armorial and this is quickly arrived at* 

A number of times I have heard the remark 
made, in fact it has been addressed to me in con- 
nection with some one of my plates. What has 
this or that plate to do with books ? Perhaps 
it may have been some plate on which there are 
no books scattered in disorderly array on a ta- 
ble so that if they were not drawn there they 
would fall off, but it is not necessary to have the 
foreground filled with books, nor to have some 
one reading a book; a great many artists think 
that in order to make a book-plate they must 
have some sort of a figure reading a book; that 
is all right, but it is not essential, in fact, the read- 
ing figure has become very threadbare* Al- 
though I like a plate that is bookish as well as 
any other, yet I feel that the book-plate, being 
essentially a personal mark, should be allowed 
to depict the tastes, thoughts or pursuits of the 
owner in whatsoever form his fancy may dictate* 

If one would spare the time to look over the 
work of several book-plate artists, it will be 
found that about all those who keep to the picto- 
rial style, work in black and white, and any re- 
marks that apply to one might do equally well 

for most of the others* However, there are ex- 
ceptions to most rules, and Mr, Adrian J* lorio 
is the exception to this; his work showing a per- 
fection in the pictorial style, combining beauty 
and gracefulness with strength of treatment in 
a manner that is seldom met with* 

Many plates, even some made by prominent 
artists, while they may be artistic and correctly 
drawn, still fail to hold one's attention owing to 
a weakness in not bringing out the central feat- 
ure of the desi^iif or, perhaps, having no central 
feature, at least that can be discovered* 

First and foremost a book-plate design should 
have a story to tell, and tell that story well, as, 
if we are to depart from the label, pure and sim- 
ple, the result is bound to be more or less a pic- 
ture* Now a picture is well enough in itself, but 
to make that picture answer to the requirements 
of a book-plate it must needs be something that 
we can connect with the owner's thoughts of his 
books in which the plate is to be placed. And 
here we have, I think, a good excuse for a book- 
man owning several plates* A book-plate that 
seems to be wholly musical really does not fit in 
a book on fiction or war, so some of the more 
fortunate have a number of personal plates, 
made with the express purpose of being placed 
in a certain class of books, while others, made 

more general in their scope, carrying a decided 
bookish flavor, or an armorial nicely worked tip 
would be applicable to almost anything in the 
way of bookL 

Mr Jorio has recognized the principle mention- 
ed above and has sought to carry it out as far as 
possible* The plates to his credit are few in num- 
ber but exceedingly beautiful in design, skilfully 
handled, and good types of what a decorative la- 
bel or pictorial plate should be* 

The plate for Arthur B* Harlow was the first 
Mr» lorio made under his own name, and is the 
mark of a bookman who is interested in philos- 
ophy. The first plate of the writer is a beauti- 
ful piece of decoration. Nearly everyone re- 
members, though perhaps vaguely, the great in- 
terest and awe awakened in one's childish mind 
by armored knights, dashing chargers and the 
like, and it was with this in view that the plate 
was designed to go in my collection of chiloren's 
books, fairy tales, and so on. My second plate 
is freer in its treatment, but still very decorative, 
a seated figure with book on knee, communing 
with nature. Juliet Marguerite Washburn has 
a plate of which she may well be proud. It is one 
of the handsomest and most appropriate I have 
yet seen. It depicts a female figure resting against 
a book standing upright, with pen in one hand 

and scroll in the other, at one side a harp, all of 
which denote the owner's pursuits. William Ar- 
thur Peabody has an armorial design very dec- 
orative in its treatment. The design used for a 
printing mark by The Charles E. Peabody Co. 
was also intended to be used as a book-plate, a 
copy being shown herewith. It shows a griffin 
standing upon two books, with a quill grasped 
in its paws, and on the open page of a book the 
name, as also the motto, ''Lux e Litteris." 

Mr. lorio's own plate is one of the most beau- 
tiful of all that he has made, and it looks as if 
he had tried to make for himself a design that 
would be a shining example of what he can do, 
although each succeeding plate from his hand 
shows an improvement over the previous ones. 
His plate has a full length figure of a knight in 
armor, resting on a shield, on which are placed 
the insignia of the artist, and suggestions of a 
love for music, with the hill of wisdom at the 
back. The whole is on a sheet that is drawn to 
represent a piece of ancient paper, worm eaten 
and torn; a novel and pleasing mode of express- 
ing the antiquity of the book-plate. 

In addition to the above, there are three other 
plates by Mr.Iorio that should not be passed over 
without some mention. That for the Troutsdale 
Press, printed in colors, is designed as a simple 

decoration, bearing a heraldic lion, used as the 
sign of the Press, and the Universal Book-plate, 
made for a book publishing concern, has as a ba- 
sis a conventionalized rose tree* The other, for 
Ada Marie I vers, shows a female figure in Co- 
lonial dress, engaged in a task dear to all fem- 
inine hearts, the trimming of head gear, while 
at her feet lies her black cat, "Wahb* A conven- 
tionalized orange tree, at the left, completes a 
plate, which, although quite decorative, is also 
a good example of simplicity, in which it differs 
from his other more elaborate plates* 

Mr* lorio was long a pupil of Will H* Bradley, 
in fact he was with him from the beginning of 
the Wayside Press until Mr. Bradley severecf his 
connection with it, working under his direction 
at Springfield, Mittineague, and at Cambridge, 
when the Wayside Press was incorporated with 
the University Press* After Mr* Bradley left the 
Press, Mr* lorio carried on the work of the Way- 
side Department until some time in J900, when 
he decided to open an office of his own. 

While with Mr* Bradley, and at the Univer- 
sity Press, his work of necessity was fashioned 
after Mr* Bradley's as closely as possible, but on 
emerging from the Press his own individuality 
and originality soon evinced themselves, and he 
now shows a style distinctively his own, though 

perhaps relying more or less on the old German 

Mr* lorio's work in book covers, catalogues, 
and the other forms of higher commercial work, 
is very well and favorably known, and it gives 
me pleasure to bring to the attention of book- 
plate collectors the excellence and variety of his 
book-plate work* 





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